Hi, y’all – can you even believe 2018 has almost come to an end?! I’m in disbelief that we’re already here. It seems like it wasn’t long ago we were ringing in 2018, yet a whole year has passed. Whew! With that said, I thought I would do a quick little recap of the year and share some of my plans for the new year in life and blogging.
So, technically I didn’t choose a ‘word of the year’ in 2018, but if I had to choose one now, I would call this past year “low key.” And that is totally fine by me! After a tumultuous end to 2017 (Blair’s broken leg and a giant leak in our living room that resulted in new hardwoods!), I was more than ready for a laid-back year ahead – and that’s (mostly) what we had.
We kicked off the year by finally potty training our oldest daughter and I shared how we did it here. I think all mamas can agree that potty training is not for the faint of heart and we’re all willing to do whatever it takes to make it work! We also got a decent snowfall (rare for this area) and the girls loved playing outside in it.
I shared my first Day in the Life post (speaking of which, I need to do this more often) and also a full list of my favorite healthy Costco finds – which continues to be one of my most popular posts ever! I also talked about my experience switching over to a Whole30/Paleo mindset and the benefits I’ve experienced. Finally, I shared my go-to lunch recipe, a healthy Chicken Salad that is perfect on a salad, lettuce wrap or even on a sandwich.
This was a busy month for us, with a long road trip to visit my parents for a week at the beach and celebrating my birthday, too! I shared my favorite healthy road trip snacks for the whole family and partnered with Freshly for some quick and easy dinners that are perfect for busy nights!
We finally got our hardwood floors replaced this month after the massive leak we had from our hot water heater and I shared four of my favorite tips to consider before installing new wood floors. I also shared a little bit of my heart and discussed how I needed to take a little step back from social media and why it’s beneficial. Ever since I took this little hiatus, I’ve stuck to only posting on Instagram 3 times per week – a huge change from previously posting 7 days a week and a game changer! I also shared my 7 favorite tips for staying healthy each day – officially my most popular post ever!
This was the month of delicious recipes! I shared one of my favorites, Healthy Pork Chops with Apples and Greens (a great dinner for a date night at home!). I also partnered with AllWhites Egg Whites and created a yummy Paleo Banana Nut Pancake recipe, which continues to be a favorite around here. I also shared my go-to Cauliflower Pizza Crust recipe – it’s so good! Finally, I gave away my secrets and shared 5 things I do each night that makes the next morning runs smoothly.
We kicked off the month by completing a DIY patio project that has been so great and functional for our backyard! I also completed a three-day sugar detox and learned some things about myself and my cravings. I spilled my meal planning secrets and shared my favorite get-healthy-quick tips to prepare for vacation.
As we prepared for yet another road trip to the beach, I shared 25 of my favorite road-trip snacks for kids. I also gave an update on our painted kitchen cabinets a year later and things I’d do differently. I shared my easy makeup routine and partnered with Oikos to make these delicious summery Lemon Meringue Bars.
We celebrated sweet Blakely’s 2nd birthday this month, and I shared all about it and how to throw a Pineapple party yourself in this post. Since we were on vacation at the beach, I also shared my 7 favorite date ideas on the Outer Banks of NC. I listed 11 of my favorite IKEA purchases for the home and I partnered with Kroger to share some back to school lunch inspiration.
Another busy month for us, as it was not only my husband’s birthday month but also Blair’s birthday, too! We hosted a Pinkalicious birthday party and I shared all the details, including how to do it yourself. I worked with Cracker Barrel Old Country Store to get our home ready for fall and I also partnered with Lindt to make these delicious Healthier Pumpkin Protein Bites.
I kicked off the month by sharing a glimpse of our fall home decor and then shared my three best tips for creating a healthy fall routine. I partnered with Mini Babybel to share some fun Halloween snack ideas and took an amazing Spin class at Spincult 901. I also shared how I plan for a trip with little ones and we enjoyed a fall getaway to the Great Smoky Mountains.
After having a Trader Joe’s nearby for a few months, I finally put together a list of my top Trader Joe’s buys, including Paleo/Whole30-friendly foods! I partnered with Hamilton Beach to share 3 ways we show hospitality in our home during the holidays. I also shared my tips for eliminating toxic cleaning supplies in the home. With Thanksgiving prep in full swing, I shared my favorite Paleo-friendly Thanksgiving menu and a favorite recipe we have at every holiday! Post-Thanksgiving, I shared some of our family’s favorite holiday traditions, as well as some fun tree trimming party ideas. Finally, I shared our holiday home tour, including 10 tips for decorating your home on a budget.
The month of celebrating and indulging! I shared my favorite tips for hosting a cookie exchange with friends and family and joined 14 home decor bloggers to share our holiday homes at night. I gave away my secret ingredient for making delicious Cranberry Bliss Bars and shared a fun, simple gift idea – Homemade Hot Cocoa in a Jar.
I didn’t realize just how busy this past year was until I listed all of this out! All in all, it was a nice year, and despite how quickly it flew by, it was nice to just take it easy and not have any big events take place. 2019 is already setting itself up to be a busy year, so I’m going to savor the rest of this year while I can!
In terms of blogging, you can expect a lot more of the same type of content from me in the new year. I do have some fun partnerships coming up and I intend to keep up with my weekly meal plans, but I will be moving these to Fridays in the new year. You can sign up to get my latest posts in your inbox once a week, so you’ll never miss a meal plan! I also plan on bringing you guys more home-related content and recipes, since those are always popular around here.
And finally, a very exciting announcement – I will be partnering with some of my favorite bloggers to bring you guys a 5 Week Clear the Clutter Challenge! We will focus on different areas of the home each week, and if you sign up for the challenge, you’ll get a checklist, calendar and helpful tips and tricks to keep you motivated and on track!
Are you ready to join the Clear the Clutter challenge?
- Join the challenge Facebook group here.
- Print out the 2019 printables (Available on January 1st).
- Invite friends to join you!
- Sign up here to receive important updates for the challenge.
I hope you’ll join us! Also, I hope each and every one of you have a wonderful New Year and enjoy the rest of the holiday season with family and friends. Thank you so much for all of your support this year – I’ll be back with some fresh content in 2019!